Monday, August 31, 2015

NIV Zondervan Study Bible - A Review

NIV Zondervan
Study Bible
NIV Zondervan Study Bible.jpg
Edited By
D. A. Carson

A Review

Some 40 years ago I sat under the teaching of D. A. Carson for Greek Exegesis.  It was my third or fourth semester of seminary at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School. Worse than that, it was Dr. Carson’s first seminary class at Trinity.  Though I had done okay in my first two semesters of Greek, I felt over my head under his tutelage.  

So  now, 40 years later, I have the opportunity to get revenge. But having spent a couple of weeks with his newly released Study Bible - I have no intention of doing so. The word that came to mind as I opened the package containing my review copy was, “Massive.”  And I have not been able to shake that initial feeling.  At nearly 4000 pages, this book is more than a Study Bible.  It is truly a single volume Bible Commentary, a set of theological essays, and a rather well-done, though compressed, concordance.  

Articles are written by a variety of scholars from the Reformed or Baptist heritage - with an obvious lack of representation from Wesleyan/Holiness  schools or churches. Not surprising given that Zondervan is the publisher, but disappointing, none-the-less, for a work of this size.  

This reader enjoyed the formatting of the book. Notes are clearly set aside from the Biblical text by giving them a light green background, while the Biblical text has a more standard white background.  The use of full-color pictures  throughout adds value to the work.  A number of tables summarize important topics - the tables also make use of tables to help important columns or rows stand out.  As with most Study Bibles, the appendix includes a good supply of Bible maps; unlike some, the body of the book also includes a large number of colored maps which supplement the notes. The hard copy also includes access to an electronic copy of the book.  

I have a few favorite Study Bibles - the NIV Zondervan Study Bible will/has become another of those favorites.  I will be consulting it often - I suspect others will as well.

This review is based on a free copy provided by the publisher for the purpose of creating this review.  The opinions expressed are my own.

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